Skip to main content

What a shocker! Kids that got assaulted by their parents are more likely to engage in criminal activity, according to study on spanking, AKA Assault and Battery on a child.

I have written one of these diaries before and you get the haughty parents that spank  saying tripe such as "some kids don't respond to anything else" or "my kid got a smart swipe on the bottom at time and he/she turned out ok"...

Or they poo-poo that it's Assault and Battery because they are ashamed that they hit their own kids so try to make themselves feel better by attacking the messenger, i.e. me.

But in the end, they are just people who can't control their tempers and take out frustrations on their kids. Worse than that are the ones who think spanking is a political issue so they spank to "git those librals".... or something.

Well, this study shows that type of mentality to be hogwash that they've been fed by their parents and grandparents, who also assaulted and battered them and on and on. As with sexual assault, it gets passed down from one generation to the next and as with sexual assault, it must be confronted.

No matter where they live in the world, university students who were spanked as children are more likely to engage in criminal behavior, according to new research by Murray Straus, co-director of University of New Hampshire Family Research Lab. Even young adults whose parents were generally loving and helpful as they were growing up showed higher rates of criminal behavior.

[snip]

"So many parents and child psychologists believe that if spanking is done by loving and helpful parents, it has no harmful effect," Straus said. "This study and only one other study I know of that empirically investigated this belief found that it is not true. Spanking seems to be associated with an increased probability of subsequent child behavior problems regardless of culture and, regardless of whether it done by loving and helpful parents."

"Children need lots guidance and correction, but not by being physically attacked under the euphemism of 'spanking,' " Straus said.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/...

Another core (false) tenet of conservatism bites the dust.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Violence is not the answer (13+ / 0-)

    I've never understood why some parents think corporal punishment is okay. They are training their children with the idea that violence is the answer to disputes. When, instead, parents seek reasoned and humane ways of communicating disapproval, they set far better examples. Also, my mom always believed in explaining rules to me and my sister, not forcefully imposing them, and treating us with respect. Because when you treat your children with respect, they will treat you with respect--and others with respect as well.

  •  spare the rod and they'll fish for a lifetime (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allergywoman, Smoh, elmo, eyesoars, MadMs

    Dudehisattva...

    "Generosity, Ethics, Patience, Effort, Concentration, and Wisdom"

    by Dood Abides on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:15:26 AM PST

  •  My attempt to research this on the internet (5+ / 0-)

    led to me to some very strange places.....

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:20:31 AM PST

  •  But they used leeches on me, and I survived it, (4+ / 0-)

    so using leeches must be okay! /snark with a purpose

    Reality cannot penetrate the bubble that spanking zealots live in.

  •  Both my kids have been relatively easygoing (6+ / 0-)

    They are not defiant or mean or aggressive.  Perhaps if they had been I might feel differently, but I can't imagine striking either of them.  It just doesn't compute.

  •  Kids who are treated badly (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allergywoman, alice kleeman

    aren't fooled, deep-down. No matter what they're told, they always know "dad's temper" isn't really about them.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:28:38 AM PST

    •  I only wish this were true. (16+ / 0-)

      The ones I treat, children and adults, pretty much internalize their "badness." Of course my sample is way skewed since they are coming mental health treatment. I don't mean this in a confrontive way, it's just what I've observed.

      Cats are better than therapy, and I'm a therapist.

      by Smoh on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:37:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I wasn't trying to be glib, (0+ / 0-)

        or to assert former abused, unwanted children, aren't confused, in virtually all cases, that they don't have life-long issues. (We have only to look at the behavior of corporate heads, lobbyists, and many legislators for proof-positive of that). Just pointing out that somewhere, deep inside most kids in abusive, powerless circumstances, is a spark of defiance. Good therapy, or other positive experiences, perhaps in adulthood, fan that spark.

        It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

        by karmsy on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 09:16:08 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Not true. (3+ / 0-)

      Abusive parents are just like the abusive spouse. It's always made to mirror to the victim that it's somehow their fault. Kids go through this daily, I did as I was growing up. The abuse I suffered went far beyond spankings.

      The key is getting to these kids before they turn adults. I was very lucky to have an 8th grade teacher who noticed all my classical signs of abuse and decided to do something about it. Back then, abuse wasn't talked about, what happened in the home, stayed in the home. But she was clever, and gave us all reports to write, assigned reports, mine was child abuse. Being an overachieving straight A student who was a loner, I did my research well. And the lights finally came on, what was going on in my home was not normal, and should never be considered normal. It took a lot of years to get over that, and severing ties with my family, and much like alcoholism, I had to hit a rock bottom mentally before I could come back up to the top.

      I have two kids now, and I would never dream of visiting upon them the horrors I went through. It was a very long road though to get over that, and I thank that teacher, and my now deceased Uncle who had a long talk with me when I visited him after I turned 21. Knowledge is power, and once a kid has that they can make a choice, because inherently (for most of them) they want to do good and be better than their parents were. Without that knowledge, some never get a chance to correct the behavior, or by then it's too late for them to make that long dark journey.

      It is every person's obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent of what they takes out of it. - Albert Einstein (edited for modern times to include everyone by me!)

      by LeftieIndie on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 11:02:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Spanking is conservative? (5+ / 0-)

    I had no idea.. I spanked mine and I'm not conservative. Neither were my my liberal Democrat Kennedy and MLK loving parents.

    The study of 'criminal university students' lol seems to me flawed. The threshold for 'criminal' is completely arbitrary and the link from spanking to university seems a tenuous link at best.

    I'll bet you 90% of Wall Street executives were never spanked. I'm I'm certain that it never happens to their own kids, raised, like them, by nannies.

    Seems to me a more interesting, and perhaps illuminative study, would look at where people end up in life broadly, from the spanked to he non-spanked. And the medicated child to the non-medicated. In our family, we consider drugging kids for behavior problems the worst kind of child abuse short of the real thing.

    Meh. Some cultures spank and some don't. How people turn out as adults to me has much more to do with environment and the system than spanking. You could be a kid who was never. spanked, and still end up like George Zimmerman. Or a spanked kid like Trayvon Martin and still end up a 'criminal.'

    •  So a loving Dad hits his kids (5+ / 0-)

      and that's OK?

      How does that register in a young child's mind?

      Why don't you continue to do that when they get older?

      No, spanking isn't the only factor in a child's life. And how they "turn out" isn't really relevant. Hitting someone else is just wrong.

    •  It showed that spanked kids of university age (9+ / 0-)

      are more likely to be violent to their partners, more likely to be violent to their parents, more likely to steal, and more likely to show markers of antisocial personality, and more likely have criminal beliefs than university age adults who were not spanked as children.  And the effect remains true across all controls of gender, culture, socioeconomic conditions and so on that were investigated, including when the parents were otherwise loving and supportive.  (The effect was weaker in such cases, but still existed, particularly in measures of violence toward parents.)

      Did you even read the article?  All of that is in there.  You're handwaving it away because you don't like what it says, but none of your objections have any foundation to them.  The link states exactly what was measured.  You want to dismiss it as important because it (in your mind) has nothing to do with Wall Street crime, that's your prerogative, but I think a few million beaten romantic partners might beg to differ.

    •  This should be interesting (6+ / 0-)

      This is a good example of a very real cultural difference between black families and white families.  I don't want to be simplistic about it, but it's a real issue.  

      I remember doing a unit on multiculturalism in my teaching program.  One of the things we discussed was the difference in how black families and white families (of a certain ilk) differ in the way they talk to their kids.  

      I can't remember who was speaking, but it was a black woman.  She made the point that a white family might "ask" their kid to take a bath like this, "Hey, could you get ready for your bath now?"

      Whereas, she said, a black family might say it like this, "Get your rusty butt into the tub."

      She used those specific words.  

      As a 25 year old, I wasn't really aware of those sorts of differences, and I have relied on some of those ideas to better understand the diversity in the families I work with.  

      Streichholzschächtelchen

      by otto on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 07:12:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Black families have different demands. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        otto, SoCaliana, mamamedusa, alice kleeman

        its part of the reason why even well to do black familes spank.And why most ignore social science techniques more appropriate for people who will never face racism in their lives. The experience of racism is so transformative in a black childs life it is almost impossible to overcome through modern child psychology. Especially for black girs, of which I have two.

        We have to teach our children endurance and coping techniques, somewhat akin to military training. That's the only thing that gives them the internal discipline to deal with a lifetime of being black.

        •  BBB That's sad. (0+ / 0-)

          That comes from a white woman who can't begin to comprehend what being on the receiving end of racism is like.

          I just do my very best to treat everyone as a person deserving of respect; just as I would like to be treated by others.

      •  I would be popped now, at my age, if I were to (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        otto

        tell my mom that it was wrong of her to have spanked me. I wouldn't even get out the first few words before I would see it coming. :)  My home is also one in which my children will get spanked occasionally for certain things, and I make no apologies for it.  I know I am a good parent and I raise my kids the way I was raised, and I know my folks were good parents too.  

         In my house, with my own parents growing up, there were rules and consequences and that was it...end of story.  I have never known a black family, including my own, that did not have this type of phenomena.  It doesn't matter the make-up of the family unit...single mom, two parent, extended generations raising district relations.   I have see it socially (neighbors, friends), and in my own extended family, and as a teacher.  

        •  Yeah, well the threat of a broken jaw is an (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          NancyK, Sir Roderick

          effective way to ensure that you respect her authority.  

          You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

          by Throw The Bums Out on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 10:11:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I think that might be changing- (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          historys mysteries

          I was talking to a couple of my daughter's AA friends who are moms, and one of them said that she decided to reject any sort of physical discipline when it occurred to her that it might have its roots in slavery, when corporal punishment was the standard way to control behavior. No one disagreed.

          •  I don't have to talk to friends of friends..I live (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            brooklynbadboy

            it and I don't see any mass changes.  

            How in the world did that conversation come up in the first place?  What was said?   Just curious.

            •  Well, they're all raising young kids (0+ / 0-)

              and some of them are also educators, so the conversation often turns to kid issues.
              Plus it's a very diverse group, so race is always a big part of the conversation too.

              As I remember it, my daughter was talking about how she tried to teach conflict resolution to the kids she had taught in Baltimore, with an emphasis on using words instead of anything physical. It worked really well with her kids, but she was not happy to see one of the kids' uncles swat him in the hallway, which she felt undermined the message.

              So then it became about people remembering physical discipline, and why this would be more prevalent in Black families, and her friend said well it's sure not because we're more violent by nature. And that whenever she asked herself about why things were different for people who grew up Black in America, the answer often goes back to slavery.
              That's her take on it, I don't know how common it is but it seemed to resonate.

              I am curious though- I know a few immigrants from Kenya who are also raising young kids, and I'd love to know their take on this but it seems obnoxious to ask.

    •  I think it's pretty obvious to anyone (5+ / 0-)

      that there are criminal actions that are overtly violent (shooting someone), and criminal actions that are not overtly violent (embezzling all of someone's money).  Both may lead to the deaths of the other, but one is easily seen as 'directly' violent, while the other is considered non-violent.

      My guess is that the study shows that those who were exposed to overt violence (of any sort) by older relatives were being taught that overt violence was an acceptable way to achieve a goal.   It's not unexpected to extrapolate such a lesson more broadly than to simply repeat it oneself.

      There is nothing shocking about such a study or the results.

      It's just one way to teach life lessons to people among many, and one that teaches a poor life lesson.

      •  Violent behavior (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        salmo, mamamedusa

        could be operating a drone if killing is the measure. Punching someone in the face in a barfight is too. Anybody could do those things if put in the right çircumstances. Even someone who was never spanked.

        My point is that a lot more goes into violent behavior as an adult than being spanked as a child.

        •  That's a point that doesn't contradict anything (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Sonnet, gramofsam1, NancyK

          said by the study.

          The study, as almost all studies do, merely speaks to improved probabilities of such actions.  It doesn't claim that the only people who become violent are those that are spanked, or that everyone who is spanked will become violent.

          I was spanked as a child, though thankfully not often, and I'm virtually a pacifist.  That anecdotal life experience does not in any way invalidate the study, though.

    •  the study debunks this anecdotal "evidence" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      historys mysteries
  •  For Consenting Adults Only (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Throw The Bums Out, Sir Roderick

    That is all.

    The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.

    by The Lone Apple on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:48:08 AM PST

  •  destroys? nah. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklynbadboy, T Maysle, nextstep

    studies of this sort conflate abuse and non-abusive spanking (light swat not intended to cause pain).  when the latter is controlled for, the correlations with negative effects vanish:

    http://www.berkeley.edu/...

  •  Isolated spankings are not physical abuse (5+ / 0-)

    I'm not a criminal, I have no criminal tendencies.  Yet I was spanked a handful of times.

    Each and every time was because I put myself in a life-threatening situation.  Such as I was told to stay by the car and my father, yet I ran straight to the edge of the bluff.

    I didn't understand at that age that I could fall 100 feet and die.  That there was no do-over.  My parents told me to stay away from the edge, but I did not listen.  I did not obey, I almost got myself killed.

    I did not understand the danger of the cliff.  But the physical nature of the spanking cemented in my mind that the danger was real, that my parents were serious about the rules.  That the rule to stay away from the cliff, like the law of gravity, is very real.

    If I had parents who refused to spank and instead tried to logically reason with me, at that age, I'd probably be dead.

    There is a time and place for isolated spankings when kids put their lives in danger.  That's not child abuse.

    •  Exactly. See my example above. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Norm in Chicago

      Our policy is and always was 'danger.'  

    •  Why were your (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      elmo, Sir Roderick

      parents putting you in such a dangerous situation when you were clearly not old enough to understand the danger?

      •  They didn't, I ran (0+ / 0-)

        We were at Eagle Point Park, in Clinton IA.  It's up on the Mississippi river bluffs.  It's a huge park, and there are some great scenic overlooks.

        I was 6 years old, which should be old enough to go to a park and have that formative experience.  My parents didn't take me to the edge of the cliff.  I ran away from them and ran to the edge.

        So I guess from your point of view, parents should not expect their kids to grow and learn, but should just keep them locked in the house, where it's safe?

        I learned more that day from going to the park and getting spanked than I would have sitting at home watching TV.

        We exist in the real world, and the only way to truly learn about it is to go out there.

    •  There's middle ground between spanking and (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Norm in Chicago

      trying to "logically reason" with a young child.  A quick arm pull, fast and intense reprimand, even a shout--all those things can have the same effect.

      •  I've had both (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        johnny wurster

        I was rough-housing once with my cousins, and we were all running through the house.  And my aunt gave me one of those "quick arm pulls".  I still remember how her nails dug into my arm.

        That was more traumatic than the spanking I got, to be honest.  So why would you ban one and allow the other?

        •  I'm not "banning" anything, and I certainly (0+ / 0-)

          don't advocate for an arm pull so violent that nails dig into a child's arm and the pain is remembered decades later.

              My experience is that taking something away from a child is effective.  They hate being deprived of their favorite toy or video or computer time.  That was an effective deterrent with my kids, YMMV.

          •  Not for me (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            johnny wurster

            I could always find something else to do. Groundings didn't work. I would just grab my picture book of the planets and pretend I was an astronaut headed for Jupiter. Think mom included books as part of the grounding?

            As for the pain of that arm pull remembered all these years later, it's because it was unproportional.  We were just playing in the house, I didn't deserve that. But every time my father spanked me, I knew I deserved it.
            That makes a difference.

            •  I didn't mention grounding because (0+ / 0-)

              I've never grounded my kids; I think that can be more of a punishment for the parents!  Also our son (now 22) is a solitary type who would have liked being told he was confined to his room or home.  

                  I found that taking away a toy or game for a specified period of time worked very well.  Unplugging the computer or hiding the Wii or playstation was something they did. Not. Like.

                  My daughter is 14 and she's a good kid, very active in school, very social, so if she ever got unbearable we could take away her cell phone for awhile, and she would shape up.  We've never had to do it.  All her music is on her phone and also 14 year old girls text a lot. Unlike my era they really don't talk on the phone, it's all texting.

    •  Isolated beatings of a wife by a husband (4+ / 0-)

      aren't abusive.

      Do you agree? If not, why not?

      And in your case, obviously the initial spanking didn't do the trick. If you truly were in life threatening situations, why would any parent continue to use a parenting method demonstrated not to work?

      As a parent, you avoid putting your child in situations where their life is in danger.

      •  But it did do the trick (0+ / 0-)

        I learned my lesson that day, and didn't go running towards cliffs after that.  Doesn't mean I never did anything else stupid.  I think I was spanked a total of 4 times in my life, each for something different.

        My parents didn't put me in danger, I put myself in danger.

        Let me give you an example.  A family has a swimming pool.  That's allowed right?  Now if a kid climbs the fence and goes swimming without supervision, did the kid create the danger, or did the parents by having the pool?

        And is the solution to spank the kid, or get rid of the swimming pool.

        As for your first non-sequitur, a spanking is not a beating, a wife is not a child, and of course you know all that.

        •  Well, you mentioned several life threatening (3+ / 0-)

          incidences that your parents spanked you for. Maybe in case of a spanking in the first instance if they had sat  you down and explained the danger it might have helped  you avoid the other incidents. And, of course, it is the parents' responsibility to make sure a young child doesn't get into life threatening situations in the first place.

          Proper swimming pool fences are designed so a child can't climb them. And in our city, if you have a pool you are required to put a loud alarm on the door leading to the pool, as well as install safety latches on the gate.

          I guess my point is that if you are relying on a spanking as a safety precaution, you're fooling yourself.

          If a husband lightly spanks a wife occasionally, is that ok with you? And, yes, a wife is not a child. She can leave if she doesn't like the way she's being treated. A child can't.  

          •  To give a real answer to your wife question... (0+ / 0-)

            I am advocating spankings for rare instances where a child puts his life in danger, does not logically comprehend the issue, cannot be logically reasoned with, and needs a wakeup call.

            To apply that same situation to a wife, would mean that wife is mentally incapable of understanding life and death dangers, is incapable of rational thought.  It would mean that wife has an IQ of 50 or so, is not mentally competent, would not be considered a legal adult.  It would mean she's not really married, because she wasn't capable of understanding the terms of a marriage.

            That you asked that question at all means you don't understand what a spanking is truly for, or how rare an event it actually is.

            My father did not "lightly spank me occasionally".  4 times in my life was a very rare event, for legitimate, severe reasons.

            •  You aren't seriously suggesting (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gramofsam1, Sir Roderick

              that a child isn't capable of rational thought. Come on.  Even a toddler can be reasoned with. I reasoned with our autistic child  as a toddler; she managed to understand and cooperate. If a parent hits a child, it's because the parent lacks the ability to use better and more effective behavior management tools. Period.

              Even animal trainers realize this, and they are dealing with creatures with much less cognitive capacity than children have.

      •  That's exactly the question (4+ / 0-)

        I asked a guy who was defending spanking his kids with "sometimes it's the only way to get their attention".

        I asked him- would you smack your wife if you didn't like her behavior and needed to get her attention?
        He was horrified. He would never hit a woman.

        But he could not come up with an explanation of why he made this distinction.

    •  the study debunks this statement (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      historys mysteries

      if you like, 2 adults yelling at a kid that put their life in danger is usually sufficient. day long timeouts also leave an impression. other ways leave an impression absent assault and battery

  •  I don't want to defend spanking (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sonnet, Norm in Chicago, gramofsam1

    Just FYI.

    I am wondering about some of the failures in reasoning that might be present in the study.  

    The main one that stands out is that it's a real possibility that a child who has been punished by spanking might also have underlying issues like ADHD.  

    I don't doubt the overall accuracy of the study.  

    It's pretty apparent that if you spank a kid regularly, then they will rely on that sort of outside intervention to keep themselves in order.  The idea of pain as a deterrent will be their main means of understanding how far is "too far."

    Streichholzschächtelchen

    by otto on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 07:07:30 AM PST

  •  Smoking pot is criminal behavior in most states. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    johnny wurster, Norm in Chicago

    So is underage drinking. So is ripping those tags off of pillows. Or cheating on your taxes. Does spanking lead to these things? Do non-spanked kids end up never telling a lie?

    Meh. Our crime problems have a hell of a lot more to do with social systems among adults than kids getting a few smacks on the behind to keep them out of danger.

  •  Spanking leads to avoiding spanking. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FiredUpInCA

    Peoples' response to behavior modification is pretty consistent and has many and often repeated studies that predict responses to different feedback.

    Punishment - a noxious stimuli - does have an effect on human behavior, but it might not be what you think.

    People, children too, focus on avoiding the punishment, not changing the behavior when there is a punishment meted for that behavior. Behavior changes much more rapidly and permanently when rewards are given for good behavior. This is true for animals, children, and adults.

    The natural cycle of punishment in children is that they begin to avoid the punishment by concealing the evidence of the behavior that leads to the punishment. Parents then catch the child "lying" and mete out another punishment, which drives the child's survival instinct to work harder at concealment. Often the lying/punishment cycle will come to identify the child as "bad" or "sneaky."

    The cause and effect is often missed, or misinterpreted. However, BrooklynBadboy identifies the one exception to behavior modification's lessons about noxious stimuli: it can be used to teach avoidance of dangerous situations where the natural extinction of the behavior (due to the absence of reward) is not acceptable or safe.

    This is one topic that has been studied and the answers are pretty clear, yet people who are ignorant about behavior modification will argue a belief based only on their gut instincts. Often the evidence is observable right in front of them in their own children's response to punishment, yet they misinterpret it.

    "There is no expedient to which man will not resort to avoid the true labor of thinking." -Sir Joshua Reynolds

    by New Jersey Boy on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 07:39:18 AM PST

  •  Spanking|Views\Not a new (6+ / 0-)

    I think this insight is not surprising and I recall reading it in Heinlein's Starship Troopers more than 40 years ago.

    From my personal experience and observations, I am not surprised by the study's results.  I think some parental "discipline" is actually self centered power trips or sadism in the worse instances.

    I've been thinking about this and it came up in a book I'm reading Republican Gomorrah by Max Blumenthal.   Maybe many on DK are familiar with it or know its arguments. For those who have not read it, Republican Gomorrah is mostly about the dominionists and their rise in the US.  I'm up to the Terry Schiavo debacle.  James Dobson and his groups are very powerful RW players.  Family Research Council and all that.

    Dobson wrote a book "Dare to Discipline" where he encourages spankings and other disciplinary measures.

    Blumenthal mentions studies where this creates more fear of authoritarian figures in the children and thus more adults who are loyal fascist zombie followers--of the Nazi's back in the day or supernatural christian leaders.

    I have a friend who fits this mold.  He's pretty bright but his Dad used to beat him incessantly as a child (for no good reasons from what I can glean), damaged him badly psychologically, and in the past 10 years my friend  has turned to RW Christian dominionism and adoption of all their views, howsoever illogical to other things he holds dear and if confronted with the discrepancies, he immediately discards the old beliefs and gets real upset.  Anyway,

    Consider this sick thought:  If you are Dobson and trying to create fascist followers, then the Strauss study means Dobson should continue to advise child beatings.

     For Dobson, having people believe in supernatural stories is more important than having healthy rational adults.  

    Heinlein's observation went like this:  How do you train a puppy?  If you took a puppy and beat it on odd days and petted it on even days, what would you get?  A confused dog which bites.  Then it's an adult dog and it bits someone so you say, criminal dog, whip out a  gun and shoot it.   The student says that's crazy.

    As Holmes observed, even a dog knows the difference between being kicked intentionally or accidently.  Kids and puppies love the adults and will try to please us.  

    Dobson's view "Dare to Discipline" ties into his view and that he and his are infallible, due to their strongly held superstitions.  Dare to be a Sadist, Dare not to Admit you are wrong, Dare to mess up your Children.  All would be better titles.

    “Everyone is ignorant, only on different subjects.” ― Will Rogers (Of course this also applies to me.)

    by MugWumpBlues on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 07:42:02 AM PST

    •  Dobson is one sick puppy (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      myboo, gramofsam1, historys mysteries

      In that book he gives advise on how to beat a baby with a wooden stick in order to cause maximum pain (avoid the diaper area...too much padding!).

      •  Dobson (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        historys mysteries

        Wow.  When Blumenthal published articles explaining Dobson's role in the Abramoff casino scandals, he writes that Dobson responded by sending a mass email accusing Blumenthal. 7000 email responses, mostly the same, no dissent among Dobson's followers, emails read things such as  Header:  "Your lies about St. Dobson"  "His focus is on helping families.  Why are you so determined to destroy America."  Republican Gomorrah page 112.

        There is also some sad funny stuff, such "The whackos get their information through the Christian right, ...simply put, we want to bring out the wackos to vote against something and make sure the rest of the public lets the whole thing slip past them."  Id at page 105.

        When the sordid affairs and the damning emails came out, the Domionists lamented they looked like gullible fools.  Apply the duck test, please.

        Still, Dobson is a major, major influence in the Republican party.   Handpicked judges who will be on the Federal bench for 20 years.

        “Everyone is ignorant, only on different subjects.” ― Will Rogers (Of course this also applies to me.)

        by MugWumpBlues on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 09:23:49 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Dobson a Total Disaster (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gramofsam1

      This thread is bringing up so many terrible memories!
      Decades ago, my ex and I swallowed the whole "Dare to Discipline" thing hook, line and sinker.
      I am ashamed to say, we spanked our "Quiver-full" for EVERYTHING.  I had a background in working with animals, and had a weird, disconnected attitude about it. I was never angry in the midst of it, it was more like a matter of fact consequence.
      My ex, on the other hand was insane.  As our kids got older, I became increasingly uncomfortable with the whole idea and stopped.  This unfortunately lead to things like him coming home, sometimes late at night,and WAKING THE KID UP to give the spanking I disobediently didn't deliver.
      Talk about living in hell!
      It took me a long time to break away from the cult-like insanity, and my kids have grown up to be wonderful people, but sadly, damage was done.
      One of my observations is that as pre-teens, they didn't have much inner self-control.They were really never given the space and time to make mistakes and develop it.
      They did eventually, and thankfully I don't see evidence of the abuse cycle repeating itself.

  •  spanking is not necessarily (2+ / 0-)

    assault, or even damage.
    I speak as someone who was spanked, on occasion and with reason.
    Not all the time, not to the point of bruises or blood, not 'just because', not with belts or the bristle side of a brush or a rod: those are all genuine abuse.

    (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

    by PJEvans on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 08:47:15 AM PST

  •  Where (0+ / 0-)

    are genetic effects addressed here?

    The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature (page 375)

    "...any study that measures something in parents and something in their biological children and then draws conclusion about the effects of parenting is worthless, because the correlations may simply reflect their shared genes (aggressive parents may breed aggressive children, talkative parents talkative children). But these expensive studies continue to be done and continue to be translated into parenting advice as if the heritability of all traits were zero."
    •  Nature v. Nurture argument again? (0+ / 0-)

      Taking the contrary side in such a discussion leads to the conclusion that "it's hopeless - nothing can be done".

      Which leads to the EVIL assumption that there are "inherently bad people".

      Most of parenting is learned behavior, and most parents will parent the way they were parented. This is verifiable both observationally and scientifically.

      If it's
      Not your body,
      Then it's
      Not your choice
      And it's
      None of your damn business!

      by TheOtherMaven on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 05:41:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  There is no Nature v Nurture argument (0+ / 0-)

        anymore - it's been settled. Both are factors. Any examination of why people resemble their parents has to take genetic effects into consideration or else it is useless.

        Understanding reality doesn't lead to hopelessness, unless you think things actually are hopeless. I don't. Genetics don't consign anyone to a life of crime; they are only part of the story. But what are the other things?

        It would be nice to know if spanking by parents actually is a factor. Unfortunately, because it apparently doesn't control for genetics, this study doesn't seem to tell us.

        •  That would be VERY difficult (0+ / 0-)

          since until VERY recently spanking was a universal Western method of punishing children. Genetics had nothing to do with it, it was "the way things have always been done".

          Any attempt to control for cultural factors would DEcontrol for genetic factors and allow people to rubbish the study because "it's not about US".

          If it's
          Not your body,
          Then it's
          Not your choice
          And it's
          None of your damn business!

          by TheOtherMaven on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 05:18:24 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  I once read that it's not the severity (0+ / 0-)

    of a consequence that makes it effective--it's the inevitability of it.  I found this to be true in the classes I teach and when raising my 2 kids who are now grown.  Backing one's word with a punishment that fits the crime was very effective for us.  I never needed to spank.  Choosing a consequence that was reasonable to administer and gives the child some hope is also important. I had a friend who used to ground her kid for months at a time.  It didn't work because he had no hope for ever having any fun so he made no attempt at behaving better.  

    “It is the job of the artist to think outside the boundaries of permissible thought and dare say things that no one else will say."—Howard Zinn

    by musiclady on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 05:10:23 PM PST

  •  Doesn't anyone regret... (0+ / 0-)

    either hitting their child or at least BEING hit?

    I was spanked as a child by loving, but ignorant parents. I don't hold what they did against me. Same thing was done to them. But what they did WAS WRONG.

    HITTING ANOTHER HUMAN BEING IS NEVER RIGHT.

    In the Buddhist system I follow, even in self-defense, we are admonished to only use enough force to stop the attacker, NOT TO HARM HIM.

    Where on EARTH would anyone get the idea that putting your hand on a little child for any reason other than to cause comfort or to prevent harm is a good idea. By preventing harm, I mean physically STOPPING a kid, not HITTING him!

    Children and animals hold a special place in my heart. I decided long ago for many reasons not to have children, so I've never had the opportunity to raise a child. But I've raised many animals, mostly dogs, and I've NEVER hit a dog. Never had to. There is NO REASON to use violence in raising a child or an animal and those who do are lazy and ignorant.

    I EXPECT this attitude and behavior from the right. I'm disgusted by how much the right-wing and authoritarian behavior in general has permeated American culture to the point that I'm actually reading that hitting a child is OK on a left blog.

    HITTING A CHILD IS NEVER OK! NEVER. NEVER.

  •  Spanking - a last resort? (0+ / 0-)

    My wife and I were able to raise our children without employing spanking. We used time-outs in a "thinking chair". Our children hated that and greatly aided our efforts by ridiculing the others if they were sent to spend time there.

    However, the avoidance of spanking does take an extremely enlightened and patient approach to achieve the desired results. My wife is a psychologist so she obviously had some preformed notions on how we would raise our children. We were also lucky in that the non-use of spanking was quite sufficient as a deterrent in our situation.

    For many families, there simply isn't the enlightenment, time or patience to obtain the necessary results by these methods. An unfortunate reality, but a true reality. I think in those situations, a little spanking is better than no discipline. Even in our case, if the time-out method was not producing results and we encountered serious (and perhaps dangerous) discipline problems, we, too, might have acquiesced to using some occasional spanking.

    Maybe we should employ background checks and home visits to ensure that spanking isn't being done!!! - Oh sorry, that is from the homeschooling diary - never mind!

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site